India has called for reforms that will include representation of Africa in the UN Security Council to give voice to the continent.
Indian minister of external affairs Subrahmanyam Jaishankar made the call at the 78th session of the UN General Assembly on Tuesday in New York.
“We must address global challenges imbued with the conviction that we are one earth and one family, with one future,” Mr Jaishankar stated.
Mr Jaishankar recalled the recent G20 Summit and said India’s presidency focused on the key concerns of the many, not just the narrow interests of a few.
“At a time when East-West polarisation is so sharp and North-South divide so deep, the New Delhi Summit also affirms that diplomacy and dialogue are the only effective solutions,” explained the Indian minister. “The international order is diverse, and we must cater for divergences if not differences.”
He added, “The days when a few nations set the agenda and expected others to fall in line are over.”
The minister noted outcomes from the summit, including an action plan for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), environmental initiatives, highlighting international financial institutions reform and the admission of the African Union as a permanent member of the G20.
“By doing so, we gave voice to an entire continent which has long been its due,” Mr Jaishankar said, and in that context, urging reforms to the UN Security Council.
The Indian official said that days when a few nations set the global agenda and “expected others to fall in line” were over, noting that we often advocate promoting a rules-based order.
“From time to time, respect for the UN Charter is also invoked. But for all the talk, there are still a few nations who shape the agenda and seek to define the norms. This cannot go on indefinitely. Nor will it go unchallenged,” Mr Jaishankar stressed.